Michigan sports bars in Washington D.C. for football

Submitted by snackyx on August 27th, 2013 at 10:28 AM

Will be in Washington D.C. fall semester doing an internship and am looking for a local watering hole that is "Michigan friendly" for football Saturdays.  Any tips?


Swang on These

August 27th, 2013 at 10:43 AM ^

Buffalo Billiards if you want a big, raucous place that is packed with Michigan jerseys and usually the DC Alumni club. mediocre food and a decent beer selection. Get there early to get a seat and be prepared to burst into Hail to the Victors every time a touchdown is scored.

Kangaroo Boxing Club in Columbia Heights(3410 11th St NW Washington, DC 20010) is a smaller barbeque place owned by 4 alumni. A little quieter, but still plenty of excitement around game time. They pull a projector down on one of the walls and offer very good food and some more off the beaten path craft beers. Be prepared to sort several bags of MandMs into blue and yellow (you'll see what I mean if you don't know already).

All in all, both are great places to watch the game, it just depends on what kind of environment you're looking for.


August 27th, 2013 at 10:37 AM ^

probably the best M bar I've ever been to (Prof Thom's in NYC is a close 2nd)

Also, FYI for everyone, there's a sticky thread of "Michigan friendly bar locations". Go there.


August 27th, 2013 at 10:39 AM ^

Bailey's Sports Grille: 4238 Wilson Blvd, Arlington, Va. 22203

Tommy Joe's Restaurant: 4714 Montgomery Lane, Bethesda, Maryland 20814

Buffalo Billiards: 1330 19th St NW, Washington, DC 20036


The best is Buffalo Billiards which is across the street from the south exit of the DuPont Circle metro (red line) entrance.  You'll see plenty of Maize n Blue clad folks going into it (it's actually below ground) so it should be easy to find.  They have drink specials, a huge space with lots of TVs and a good crowd/atmosphere.

Never been to the MD one and been to Bailey's once.  It's in the Ballston Mall and has lots of TVs but doesn't have nearly the energy of Buffalo Billiards (disclaimer: the only game I've watched there was Bama last year, so not much reason for energy).  Kind of old and dingey too. 

If you can, head to the Buffalo Billiards one for the best all around.  If you do decide to go there, don't expect to get a seat if you show up less than 15 minutes before kickoff.  It fills up quick.


August 27th, 2013 at 10:49 AM ^

Went to Tommy Joe's near Bethesda Metro for last year's ND game. Patrons were mostly in their 30s to 40s, I would say. The atmosphere was nice and Michigan fans outnumbered others 4 to 1, with about 40 in total. They had good chicken wings and beer. I guess the only things I didn't like were those interceptions and that fumble...


August 27th, 2013 at 10:44 AM ^

I'm not the biggest Buffalo Billiards fan, so I've been seeking alternatives for a while and found what might be my favorite restaurant in DC: Kangaroo Boxing Club, in Columbia Heights.


Ridiculously good BBQ, started by Michigan people (so they show all the games and a good Michigan contingent is there watching), much smaller than BBs and I think a lot more fun, especially for basketball games. Order the gorgonzola bacon mac and cheese. Best I've ever had.


Edit: Beat by seconds! Obviously this is the place to be.

oriental andrew

August 27th, 2013 at 1:59 PM ^

Contact this guy:



Nathan Mair ’08

Email: [email protected]

The University of Michigan Beijing Alumni Group hopes to continue the strong historical connection U-M has had with China. We hope to continue this tradition with the following initiatives:

  • Offer a strong platform for networking in Beijing.
  • Help to build academic and business relationships for the University
  • Help to develop internship/ career programs for current students and alumni in Beijing
  • Help to recruit students in China
  • Be a resource for faculty and staff members at U-M
  • Be a trusted source for alumni wishing to expand their business in China or seeking a business partner.

Ross Alumni Contact: Jasmine Zhang, MBA’08; MS’08- [email protected]
Ross Alumni Contact: Luhai Zeng, MBA’07 – [email protected]


August 27th, 2013 at 11:11 AM ^

Not trying to hijack the thread, but I recently moved from DC to Baltimore and am trying to find a good Bmore bar to catch the game at.  Any UM Baltimoreans have suggestions?


August 27th, 2013 at 12:04 PM ^

The Baltimore Alumni Club used to meet at Slainte in Fells Point on Thames and Broadway. Exciting atmosphere. I watched most of the games there and had a blast.

Also, Maisy's in Downtown Baltimore on Charles St is owned by a big UM fan (his name is Matt), but it's not really a "sports bar" per se. They have two TVs though and the game will always be on with a few fans.

[former Downtown Baltimore resident]


August 27th, 2013 at 12:46 PM ^

Oh man, that's right where I used to live. I could go on for awhile about the great spots in that area if you're interested. I lived there for two years and moved in February. I miss it everyday. Matt at Maisy's is a good dude and will shoot Michigan sports with you, so if you want somewhere down the street I'd recommend it.

Local tip, definitely check out George's on Mt. Vernon Square, inside the Wyndham Peabody Court Hotel. Ironically, it's the best local bar in that area in my opinion, despite being in a hotel. If John is working, tell him Mike in San Diego sent you. He's the best bartender in Baltimore and one of my best friends. You'll meet a lot of locals there.

Baltimore can seem tough at first, but I'd argue it's one of the most close-knit communities around. Hope you're enjoying it so far.

Edit: Can't miss Mick O'Shea's either (across from Maisy's). Just an awesome locals bar where I met some of my great friends in the city.


August 27th, 2013 at 1:28 PM ^

I moved to Baltimore after six years in DC. Got very tired out of DC and thought that Baltimore had a better vibe. I'm in an apartment until I can find a rowhouse to buy, so I plan on staying here for a while, even though I work in DC and the commute a couple times a week is rough. Thanks for the suggestions. I will definitely try them out.

PB-J Time

August 27th, 2013 at 1:39 PM ^

His info is very good, but just to add that Slainte is by far the biggest EPL (soccer) bar in Baltimore so if there is a noon kickoff there will be plenty of soccer hoolaginism there too.

*I used to live in Bmore. Mostly watched from home but did go to Maisy's a handful of times. Not a sports bar but a nice chill location that the owner would be happy to chat you up & high five for the TD's


August 27th, 2013 at 11:28 AM ^

For the great vibe, good food and slightly chiller fans. That's where I'll be most game days. Buffalo Billiards is huge, packed, and raucous. And frankly has more and larger TVs and therefore better sight lines even when crowded. That's where I went when I was still in my 20s.

L'Carpetron Do…

August 27th, 2013 at 2:31 PM ^

KBC is awesome but its really small.   I never go to Buffalo anymore (partly because I live right around the block from KBC now), but its too crazy in there during the games.  Its huge but it gets really crowded and becomes a little hard to concentrate on the game.  

The dudes who run KBC are great.  For the Final 4 and title game they put TVs outside on the roof so people could watch from the street.

Those guys are opening another place Ivy & Coney on 7th st in Shaw - http://www.washingtoncitypaper.com/blogs/youngandhungry/2013/07/10/kangaroo-boxing-club-owners-to-open-bar-in-shaw/

So presumably they'll be showing Michigan games there, making KBC a little less crowded.  Wont be open til October though...


August 27th, 2013 at 2:38 PM ^

I have to echo the suggestions of Buffalo Billiards... It's crowded and fun college football Saturdays.  It is indeed huge.  Food is OKAY.  Beer selection is great.  TV viewing situation is very good.  If the Michigan game is the prime game of the timeslot, it will be played on the giant projector screen and the audio blasted over the speakers.  This is true of any prime game.  I've been there when the top afternoon game was Texas playing A&M or somebody and the burnt orange was overwhelming.   The Michigan/ND and OSU games should be packed with Maize n Blue, as well as gold/blue, scarlet/grey and the MSU and Nebreska games could be similar depending on the competing games.


August 25th, 2015 at 12:19 PM ^

Thread necromancy in anticipation of a season during which I will prefer to watch games with others, rather than alone in my house, weeping with frustration into a couch pillow.

One major addition to the scene is RFD in Chinatown, which is now the official Alumni Association game watching bar in DC. It's big and they have a jillion beers (including the first and only Deschutes tap in the city, as of this past spring) and lots of TVs. Michigan game specials include $4 Bell's and $15 craft beer buckets. As a number of MGoWashingtonians can attest after Brian's recent appearance, their IT is not exactly top-notch. Games are on satellite so if it's storming outside the feeds can get messed up, although in fairness I think that's true of most bars. 

Kangaroo Boxing Club is okay if you can get there in time to have a clear view of a TV. As previous commenters have mentioned, it's small and cramped. Lots of obstructed-view seats. The barbecue and comfort food is pretty solid, and they have a good if limited (compared to RFD) beer selection. Their "Michigan Drinking and Yelling" shirts are cool and good if you're into that kind of thing.

Buffalo Billiards does get very crowded, but IMHO the huge crowd can be fun -- 300 people singing the fight song together is exciting. Used to be the official Alumni Association bar but has ceded that title to RFD, as noted above. Even when they were the official AA bar, they weren't just a Michigan bar, so there are usually other games on.

The other official AA bar in the area is still Tommy Joe's, in Bethesda. I've never been, and I grew up in Silver Spring so I have a congenital dislike of Bethesda. YMMV.

Anyone else have updates or recommendations for where to watch games?